The original Pottery Barn opened in 1949, among the docks and warehouses of West Chelsea in lower Manhattan. Our founder, Paul Secon, took a sacred approach to well-designed merchandise. He specialized in tabletop seconds and closeouts, offering customers great value on fashionable, exclusive home wares.
Over the years, our brand started to offer a variety of kitchen and decorative household items. It expanded to the West Coast and was purchased by The Gap Stores, Inc. in 1983 - and then Williams-Sonoma, Inc. three years later. The world-famous Pottery Barn catalog, now mailed to millions of customers each year, launched in 1987.
Our brand has continued to evolve, including the addition of our Design Studio and an increased emphasis on craftsmanship and high-quality materials. Today, we focus heavily on four areas: innovating our designs, giving back to our planet and global communities, offering top-notch service to our customers and creating enduring products.
From our design floor in San Francisco to our stores around the world, our end-goal remains the same: To help our customers live a more functional, beautiful and comfortable life at home.
THE HAND OF THE ARTIST
Nearly all of our products are imagined and designed in our San Francisco studios. Our artists hand-create prototypes for everything from seasonal dinnerware to patchwork quilts to lighting.
Almost all of our upholstered products are manufactured in our own Sutter Street factory just outside Hickory, North Carolina, where master craftsmen and women cut and sew fabric, tuft headboards and apply nailheads by hand.
Look for the "Eco Leaf" icon in our catalog, stores and online to find products that meet our standards of environmental and social responsibility. Our list is constantly growing. It includes organic bedding and bath textiles; flooring and rugs made from recycled plastic bottles; reclaimed-wood furniture; eco upholstered beds and sofas; and lighting made from recycled glass, to name just a few.
In 2015, we launched a partnership with the nonprofit Business for Social Responsibility and the HERproject (Health Enables Return), a workplace training program that empowers low-income men and women working in factories, including those where some of our products are made. Over the next five years, we pledge to impact the lives of 100,000 factory workers in China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam by providing them with education on health and financial literacy.
FOREST STEWARDSHIP COUNCIL
Many of our products are made with wood that's certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a nonprofit that promotes conservation of natural forests, protection of biodiversity and social responsibility - and is widely recognized as the gold standard for sustainable forest management.
BETTER COTTON INITIATIVE
We proudly partner with the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), which promotes improvements for the environment, farming communities and local economies where cotton is produced.
"CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY IS ONE OF OUR CORE VALUES. AS A COMPANY, WE'RE COMMITTED TO INTEGRATING IT INTO EVERY PART OF OUR BUSINESS."